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Pug Hill Mass Market Paperback – Nov 2011

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 293 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Books; Reprint edition (Nov. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425245055
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425245057
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 1.9 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 435,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Pug Hill For Hope McNeill, pugs are love, happiness, freedom. With no time or apartment space for a pug of her own, Pug Hill in Central Park is her one refuge from her mismatched boyfriend, her hopeless coworker crush, and the biggest crisis of all--a speech for her parents' 40th wedding anniversary. Full description

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For Holly Golightly, there was always Tiffany's. Read the first page
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Leah Graham on 30 Oct. 2011
Format: Paperback
If the title hasn't already clued you in, and you haven't seen the book cover filled with pugs, then I'd like to let you know that Pug Hill is all about pugs. (I know, I am nothing if not obvious.) I mean, don't get me wrong it's about other things, too - Hope overcoming her fear of public speaking; Hope overcoming her crush on her girlfriended-up co-worker Elliott (no, I'm not entirely sure girlfriended-up is a word either, but it works, so it stays); Hope being Hope and overthinking everything; Hope overthinking her relationship with Evan (yup, despite crushing on Elliott, Hope has a boyfriend, named Evan). But, mostly, the novel is about the pugs and about Pug Hill. About how Pug Hill is Hope's salvation; it's where she goes when she needs to put the world to rights, when she needs to know there's something that is solid in her life.

I will admit that I found the whole Hope overcoming her public speaking phobia to be both over the top (in a good way) and not as over the top as it should have been. I mean, the build up as Hope tries to overcome her public speaking is the over the top part, but the actual Hope trying to overcome her public speaking at her parents' anniversary is rather brushed over somewhat. It sort of let the book down a bit for me. I mean, we've spent lessons with Hope as she tries to be able to speak freely in public without freaking out. We've spent hours at Pug Hill with her as she tries to overcome it. We've listened to why she can't speak publicly, we've understood... So the end result should have had more time spent on it. It should have been bigger than it was. But sadly it wasn't. It was all over much too quickly for my liking.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By BeatleBangs1964 TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 Sept. 2010
Format: Paperback
"Try to realize it's all within yourself. No one else can make you change." -- George Harrison, 1967 from "Within You, Without You"

Hope McNeil is a conservationist at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (the "Met"), who is every neurotic cliche and then some. Her boyfriend Evan is devoted to playing squash instead of spending time with her and she has a crush on a co-worker. Hope has a phobia of speaking before groups and her parents insist she make a speech for their 40th anniversary.

This is excellent chick lit. Hope is a very distinctive character who is inordinately fond of and attached to a Zoloft commerical. She gives a unique perspective on dating and relationships that are on target.

Her favorite place to decompress is Pug Hill, a place where pug owners convene on E. 74th Street in Central Park. The curly tailed canines bring her joy and cheer with their expressive faces and delightfully affectionate personalities. Hope even said that Pug Hill works wonders for her instead of Tiffany's, which is an antidote for ennui and depression for others.

As delightful as the curly tailed dogs are, even they can't wipe out her apprehension about her impending speech or her great sense of loss when she and Evan walk their separate ways. Still, the curly tailed champions come through for her.

Hope wisely enrolls in a 6-week class to conquer her fear of public speaking. She has a delightfully ecelectic group of classmates including a good looking guy. Her blunders in class are endearing, yet funny. The best part is that Hope looks to herself to find the core of strength she never knew she had. Even so, she remains wonderfully neurotic, quirky and very much the individual.
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By wendy swinton on 19 Mar. 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
another great book my daughter liked very much. well worth a read for all pug lovers,would love more pug books.
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By Keri Burton on 3 Nov. 2014
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Great product and service:-)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 50 reviews
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Pug Hill review from The Daily Buzz's Lit Chick 3 May 2006
By Kristin - Published on
Format: Paperback
In Alison Pace's charming second novel PUG HILL, Metropolitan Museum of Art conservationist Hope McNeill is an endearingly neurotic basket case. She has a squash-playing boyfriend who she's not happy with, a coworker she's in (unrequited) love with, and a fear of public speaking, which suddenly becomes an issue when her parents call and ask her to give a speech for their 40th anniversary.

Hope is like no other character in women's fiction. She loves the Zoloft commercial on TV and find comfort in its animated bouncing egg. Her narration is a constant stream of dead-on observations about dating and human nature that will make every reader smile broadly and nod in agreement at least once every few pages. And her main source of solace in Manhattan is Pug Hill, a grassy hill on Central Park's east side around 74th Street, where pugs from all over the city convene. No, Hope doesn't have a pug herself, but she finds peace, happiness and relaxation in watching the pugs romp and spin around without a care in the world.

"For Holly Golightly, there was always Tiffany's," Hope says in the book's opening paragraph. "No matter what was going wrong in her life, she always had Tiffany's. For me, there's always Pug Hill."

But even Pug Hill can't provide the solace Hope craves when she breaks up with the squash-playing Evan and decides to finally face her fear of public speaking by signing up for a course called Overcoming Presentation Anxiety, which meets on Thursday nights for the next six weeks. Her classmates are wacky (and one is even a cute guy!), and with the help of frequent visits to Pug Hill and a few embarrassments in class, Hope begins to discover a faith in herself that she never knew she had. Admirably, Pace doesn't make the class a cure-all, and Hope is still mired in many of her old insecurities, but watching her grow is refreshing. Readers will find themselves cheering Hope on as she attempts to work through her doubts and fears.

Pace, the author of IF ANDY WARHOL HAD A GIRLFRIEND (one of my favorite books!), has written an incredibly insightful book that is more about self-confidence, family struggles, dating and the issues that confront us all than it is about Hope herself or the specific obstacles she has to face. She has a uniquely singular writing style, and the inner voice that she gives Hope will resonate with anyone who has ever dealt with any sort of insecurity.

"I'd like to think that the book has something to say about facing your fears, learning to believe in yourself, and not giving up even when you'd like to," Pace says. "I do think many of us have fears that get in the way of our development. And Hope, for as closed off as she can be, really does go after facing her fears."

The ending, too, is perfectly written, surprising and satisfying.

This book is a must-read. Holly Golightly may have had Tiffany's, and Hope McNeill may have had her place in Central Park where the pugs roam. But for me, when I need to feel a little comforted, I'll always have Alison Pace's PUG HILL.

Also recommended: If Andy Warhol Had a Girlfriend (Alison Pace), Milkrun (Sarah Mlynowski), Killer Summer (Lynda Curnyn), The Breakup Club (Melissa Senate) and How to Sleep With a Movie Star (by me . . . Kristin Harmel)
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Well written and increadibly enjoyable! 12 Jun. 2006
By A. Costanzo - Published on
Format: Paperback
Alison Pace is clearly a very talented writer. The way she draws you in from the first pages of Puf HIll is wonderful. Not only is this book laugh-out-loud funny, it is witty, thoughtful, and sweet. Pace spins an engaging and immensely enjoyable narrative which I really identified with personally. This book is pure joy. I highly recommend a visit to Pug Hill!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
I loved this book! 12 Jun. 2006
By Sarah Mlynowski - Published on
Format: Paperback
Pug Hill is the smart and sweet story of one woman's search for happiness (and fearlessness) in the big city. You'll cheer for the witty and loveable Hope McNeill from page one. But be warned: not only will this book make you want to immediately buy Alison Pace's other work, you'll probably want to run out and adopt a pug.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Quirky and charming 9 July 2006
By Chick with Book - Published on
Format: Paperback
Alison Pace's debut, IF ANDY WARHOL HAD A GIRLFRIEND, is one of my favorite novels. So I was very excited to read her follow up, PUG HILL.

Hope McNeil is a 31 year old art restorer for the Metropolitian Museum of Art. She has an unrequited crush on Elliot, a fellow restorer, who sadly doesn't seem to know she exists except as a co-worker. Her boyfriend looks good on paper but is somewhat lacking in person. Worst of all, her parents want her to give a speech at their fortieth anniversary party, and nothing fills Hope with more dread.

The one thing in Hope's life that constantly gives her joy is Pug Hill, a section of Central Park where pug owners can let their dogs roam free. Hope doesn't have a pet, but Pug Hill is her refuge, her place of recharge. But even Pug Hill lets her down when she skips out of work one afternoon to discover no dogs are around.

Hope finally takes charge of her life, a little, by signing up for a class in overcoming presentation anxiety at the New School. Together with her fellow classmates, Hope works on overcoming her crippling fear of public speaking while also learning unexpected insights about herself and her new acquaintances.

PUG HILL is a quiet novel. Hope is very introspective, a reactive and passive character, and the first half of the novel drags a little. But Pace's clever way with words keeps the reader interested, and the pace picks up once Hope enrolls in class. By the end, I was thoroughly charmed and rooting for Hope, so much so that I bought the fairy tale-esque ending hook, line and sinker.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
LOVED this book. 11 May 2006
By Lisa - Published on
Format: Paperback
I don't have words to express how much I LOVED Pug Hill!

Not only is this book a fun, hilarious read, but the author really captured the essence of big city life -- for both people and pugs!

As a New Yorker myself, I completely identified with Hope McNeil's (the heroine) hopes, fears, and insecurities. And I totally appreciated her wit -- it had me laughing aloud! I was also laughing aloud at the spot-on description of the pugs in the book. As a pug owner, I'm accustomed to all the little tricks pugs pull to get their way, and Alison Pace has captured those 100%.

I cheered Hope McNeil on through the entirety of this book, I laughed at her snide New Yorker quips and her hilarious turn in public speaking class, and I cried when she made realizations about life, love and family that we all need to make in our own lives.

The bottom line is that Pace has done something that few authors can do: She's written a book that's both entertaining and insightful. A book that makes you both laugh at your life and appreciate your life at the same time.

(And of course the pugs are adorable!)
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